Blogs

Apollo Lunar Lander Team to Share Lessons Learned With NASA

Apollo 17 lander on the Moon. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 05.07.2007]
On July 20, the 38th anniversary of the first moon landing, NASA will host more than a dozen retired members of an engineering team that worked on the Apollo-era spacecraft that carried astronauts to the lunar surface. The engineers will share lessons learned with current NASA employees in the Constellation Program, which will return astronauts to the moon by 2020.

NASA Liquid-Mirror Telescope on Moon Might See Deeper Back in Time

[NASA Ames Press Release - 21.06.07]
Someday, astronauts on the moon may pour liquid onto a disc-shaped mesh to make a huge mirror for a powerful telescope, according to a technical article just made public.

The liquid would include a silver-coated surface, and would be part of an optical-infrared telescope with a 66-foot (20-meter) to 328-foot (100 meter) aperture capable of observing objects 100 to 1,000 times fainter than the James Webb Space Telescope, the authors say. The technical paper will appear in the June 21, 2007, issue of the journal, Nature.

NASA Prepares for Performing New Science on the Moon

[NASA Press Release - 21.06.07]
NASA has selected proposals for future lunar science activities and established two new programs that will enhance research made possible by the Vision for Space Exploration.

The proposals and programs are part of an effort by NASA to develop new opportunities to conduct important science investigations during the planned renewal of human exploration of the moon.

X PRIZE Foundation Announces Competitors for Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge

Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge Logo. Credits: X Prize

[X-Price press release - 20.06.2007]
A real rocket race is on the horizon with the return of the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge (NG-LLC), the centerpiece of the Wirefly X PRIZE Cup and Holloman Air and Space Expo. In the Challenge's second year, the number of teams competing for the $2 million purse has increased from four teams to nine. The NG-LLC, sponsored by NASA's Centennial Challenges Program, is designed to accelerate commercial development of technology that can ferry cargo and humans between the moon's surface and lunar orbit.

Venus Near the Moon [image]

Here's an image from the Astronomy Picture of the Day showing the Moon and Venus.

http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap070523.html

"The two brightest objects in the night sky appeared to go right past each other last week. On the night of May 19, Earth's Moon and the planet Venus were visible in the same part of the sky, and at closest approach were less than one degree apart.

Oresme: Signs from the Lunar Heavy Bombardment

Oresme crater seen from Smart-1. Credits: ESA/Space-X

[ESA Press Release - 18.05.2007]
This image, taken by the Advanced Moon Imaging Experiment (AMIE) on board ESA's SMART-1 spacecraft, shows the Oresme crater on the Moon.

AMIE obtained this picture on 30 August 2006 - only 4 days before SMART-1’s final impact on the lunar surface. It was taken from a distance of 1 100 kilometres over the surface, with a ground resolution of 110 metres per pixel.

9th ILEWG Lunar Conference, Sorrento, Italy, 22-26 Oct 2007

[ICEUM9/ILC2007 Call for Abstracts - 08.05.2007]
Dear Lunar and Space Explorer,

Please find herewith the Announcement and Call for Abstracts for the 9th ILEWG International Conference on Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon (ICEUM9/ILC2007), to take place on 22-26 October 2007, Sorrento (near Naples), Italy.

Abstracts, early registration and requests for support are due on 15 June 2007. Please circulate this announcement to your interested colleagues.

NASA to build new stand to test Ares rocket engines

A concept drawing of the J-2X rocket engine. Credits: NASA

[08.05.2007 - NASA Press Release]
NASA will test one of the rocket engines it is developing for its new launch vehicles at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The agency will build a new test stand at Stennis for the J-2X engine. The engine will power the upper stages of NASA's Ares I and Ares V rockets.

Stennis already is home to Apollo-era test stands that have served the nation's space program through the shuttle era. The newly proposed structure will be the first large test stand built at the center since the 1960s. Unlike the older structures, the new 300-foot-tall, open-frame design will allow engineers to simulate conditions at different altitudes.

NASA Awards Heat Shield Material Contracts for Orion Spacecraft

Thermal protection system (TPS) material coupon undergoing test at 1000 W/cm^2. Credits: NASA

[04.05.2007 - NASA Press Release]
NASA has selected The Boeing Company, Huntington Beach, Calif., and Textron Systems, Wilmington, Mass., to develop alternate heat shield materials for the Orion crew exploration spacecraft.

The two contracts for Alternate Block 2 Thermal Protection System
(TPS) Materials and Heat Shield Systems Advanced Development will support development and testing of three alternative heat shield materials, designs and manufacturing processes. Under the contracts, the companies will work to ensure the technologies are mature enough to become viable backups if there are difficulties with the primary material.

NASA's Centennial Challenge to Excavate Moon Dirt Set for May 12

Artist impression of a regolith exavator. Credits: NASA

[04.05.2007 - NASA Press Release]
On Saturday, May 12, teams from around the nation will compete for a total of $250,000 from NASA for an autonomously operating system to excavate simulated "lunar regolith," or the moon's soil. The Regolith Excavation Challenge, one of NASA's seven Centennial Challenges, will take place at the Santa Maria Fairpark, Santa Maria, Calif. The competition on May 12 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Syndicate content